RUIDOSO, N.M. – Lincoln County Medical Center (LCMC) was recently named Top Overall Hospital by the New Mexico Hospital Association (NMHA) in recognition of its high performance in quality and patient safety initiatives.
LCMC was also named a Quest for Excellence Award winner in the rural/critical access hospital category for a program that significantly reduced re-admissions to the hospital among patients aged 65 and older. The awards were announced at the NMHA annual meeting on Sept. 25.
"We were honored to be named Top Overall Hospital in the state," said Wendi Hulett, chief nurse executive at LCMC, who led the re-admission reduction initiative. "We continually strive to improve the care we provide to our patients – this is a wonderful recognition of the hard work of our entire team at LCMC."
Each year, the NMHA requests applications from hospitals for initiatives that improve patient safety and quality. This year, there were 25 Quest for Excellence applications. The NMHA's Quality Committee chose the top three. Representatives from five hospital associations outside New Mexico then chose LCMC to be named Top Overall Hospital.
"The Quest for Excellence Award represents the highest level of professional acknowledgement from NMHA's Quality Committee," said Dan Lanari, NMHA's Director of Quality & Patient Safety. "The goal of the award is to stimulate innovation, knowledge, and learning to achieve statewide clinical excellence amongst member hospitals and health systems. Lincoln County Medical Center's efforts to reduce hospital readmissions exemplified innovative approaches to achieving outstanding results."
Two other Presbyterian facilities also received awards from the NMHA. Presbyterian Rust Medical Center and Socorro General Hospital were named top performers for quality and patient safety, based on the most recent 12 months in the Hospital Improvement Innovation Network, a program funded by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services. SGH was named one of the top five rural hospitals and Presbyterian Rust Medical Center was named one of the top five general acute care hospitals.
At the same NMHA meeting, Todd Oberheu, hospital chief executive at Lincoln County Medical Center, received the Senior-Level Healthcare Executive Regent's Award from the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE). This award recognizes ACHE members who have made significant contributions to healthcare management and demonstrate a commitment to professional excellence.